Day +3993: A shovel full of sand.

“....The gods left a shovel full of sand to keep us up. …”
…280 meters…
and she’s still in one piece! …”

The alarm was blaring at 6:00 am sharp. It continued to drone on until 6:15 and then died a timely death. No coffee, no food, no water. 7:00 am departure. Nauseated and weak. I95 Rush hour – not nearly as exciting as it sounds.

The preplanned target list for the day:

8:00 Blood work.
11:00 Infusion Center
13:30 Bone Marrow biopsy.

By the time we made it to Hopkins, Karen was extremely weak and the nausea was overbearing. Due to the scheduled biopsy being with sedation, aside from the food and drink restrictions, we didn’t know if she could have her anti-nausea meds. The blood draw was quick; but the routine Hopkins heartbeat is barely functional at 8 am and none of Karen’s medical team was available.

We headed up to the Infusion center. The waiting room was overcrowded. Cancer patients are seen here also for urgent care needs. We got lucky that Karen’s assigned nurse for the day was present, and by 8:20am she had moved Karen to the overflow bed, authorized 4mg of Zofran (anti-nausea meds) and started pushing 1,000 ml of Saline. The saline junkie was happier.

The blood counts today (in contrast to Monday):

Platelets 131 up from 59 (wow – almost back in normal range)
WBC 2.61 down from 2.85
RBC 3.02 up from 2.69
Hemoglobin 9.2 up from 8.3

The trends are definitely hopeful, yet puzzling at the same time. Karen generally has been feeling at lot worse than we have experienced in the past during chemotherapy.

The food issues, nausea, weakness, shortness of breath all seem to be worse this time and disproportional to her blood counts.

Although the bone marrow biopsy ran about an hour late, it went reasonably well – ok, they didn’t hit any nerves going in this time. Although, no marrow aspirate was obtainable again, we hope that the sample will provide the insight into what is going on – the fibrosis of her marrow might provide the proper challenge to the doctor and techs to keep them interested during their analysis and interpretation (plus or minus 10 days for full results).

Chemo Cycle Three starts Monday and so the counts are expected to ‘dive’ a little.

So, this is as big of a YEAH as I’m willing squeeze out.

Karen had been busy updating the tag lines, so I thought to switch and dump a lone cheery happy movie in the mix.



  1. Keeping you both in prayer & sending positive vibes & hugs. I just got a BMB two weeks ago at Hopkins & part of results showed up on My Chart in three days. Never that fast before. The remaining results three days later. The speed was startling to say the least. Everything is always hurry up & wait there. Take care of yourselves.

  2. Sending wishes for a boring week, better counts and some good preliminary results from the BMB.
    Keeping you in my thoughts,

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